Cold-brewed tea

In March I promised to write a little more about tea here and I was thinking of the cold-brewed tea I make year-round – too delicious to have only in the summertime.

This is one way, using loose green tea.

To make 1 liter (1 quart), measure one heaping tablespoon of tea leaves and place inside an empty teabag or tea ball, then cover with filtered water. Shake/stir. To maximize the taste, let sit at room temperature for 30-40 min but not longer, otherwise the tea’s bitterness will come out.

Above I used a Chinese “silver tip” tea but I’ve also used others, including this “bilochun”.

Then, overnight in the fridge and, voilà! Fresh, grassy and not a hint of bitterness.

P1060020 cropped lower res copyLovely with yoghurt (plain Greek blended with wild blueberries, a little bit of honey, ground flax seeds, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds), a banana and, naturally, mint. Santé!

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Tea Philosophy

Tea time 2016

Here is a slightly edited excerpt from Journey in Search of Korea’s Beauty, by BAE Yong Joon, containing an uplifting view on drinking tea. I have rendered the last sentence as a poem, although it appears as prose in the book:

The Venerable Choui, the Korean “sage of tea,” wrote in Ode to the Tea of the East that drinking tea alone was godly, as it was in the realm of the divine and the profound. Two people drinking tea was victorious, as it was refined and tranquil. Three or four people were “pursuing,” as it was in the realm of mirth and enjoyment. Five or six people were “wide,” and more than that were “giving,” as it signified the sharing of food.

I prefer to drink tea with at least one other person, a like-minded companion if possible. When I do drink alone, I do not go to great effort but if I have at least one person with me, I am motivated to put more care into conveying the flavor and aroma of the tea. I think that:

One person drinking tea can achieve meditation;

Two people, communication;

Three, shared sympathy;

And four, harmony.

        — BAE Yong Joon

More on tea, this time from me, in the months to come.